High School baseball preview
Team-by-team preview capsules of high school baseball teams as provided by coaches. (Additional reports will be added when received):
You’ll find reports for teams in the 4AGSHL, 3A GSHL, 2A GSHL and 1A Trico Leagues.
4A GREATER ST. HELENS LEAGUE
BATTLE GROUND: No report received
Coach: Joe Hallead
Key players: Tyler Hallead, sr., p; Dylan White, jr.; if-of-p; Blake Christopher, jr.; Reilly Hennessey, jr.; Tyler Hows, sr.; Gabe Heredia, sr., p; Spencer Hunt, sr., of.
Outlook: Tyler Hallead is a Central Washington recruit who sported a sub-1.00 ERA last season. The Papermakers look to a new group of senior and juniors to be team leaders after graduation losses to last year’s roster.
Coach: Chad Burchett
Key players: Patrick Thorpe, sr., p-ss; Ryan Grening, sr., 1b.
Outlook: Experience is not a strength of the Plainsmen, who could possibly start seven sophomores. But Burchett hopes a strong pitching staff, anchored by first-team all-league pick Thorpe will keep Evergreen in ball games. Grening will bat cleanup for Evergreen for a fourth year.
Coach: Mitch Ratigan
Key players: Tim Hergert, sr., ss-p; Dakota Clevidence, sr., 1b-p; Alex Smith, sr., of-if-p; Javier Villanueva, sr., p; Simon Bos, sr., of-p; Eric Lovingood, sr., of-p; Marcus Mason, sr., c; Dakota Kerns, sr., ut; Bryce Hendy, jr., 3b-p; Jarod Luedecker, so., 2b-of.
Outlook: Last season opened with high hopes, but disciplinary issues gutted the roster before the season began. The upside to that is younger Timberwolves gained a lot of playing experience. Now Heritage looks to turn that experience into victories, led by seniors Hergert and Clevidence. The addition of new faces (Villanueva and Smith) will help the Timberwolves develop into contenders.
Coach: Eric Estes
Key players: Ian Hamilton, sr., p; Brayden Maney, sr., dh; Alec Chaney, jr., of; Chase Wiger, sr.; Austin Greene, jr., p; Brooks Hanson, jr; Jordan Freese, jr., c; James Brooks, jr., ut; Adam Walker, jr.; Curtis Perrin, jr., 2b; Reiley Henderson, sr., if.
Outlook: After starting seven sophomores on a team that make a playoff run last season, the Storm are loaded with talented and experienced players. Hamilton (Lower Columbia CC), Wiger (Mount Hood CC) and Henderson (Western Oregon) already have plans to play baseball in college. Maney is a two-time first-team all-league player.
Coach: Tom Lampkin
Key players: Jake Hawken, jr., p-of-1b; Seaver Whalen, sr., ss; Jack Bauer, so., c; Ethan Beniga, jr., 2b-of.
Outlook: Whalen, who has signed to play baseball for Santa Clara, will provide leadership on a young roster. Lampkin says his young pitching staff should keep the Titans in close games, but he’s looking for production from the bottom end of the lineup.
3A GREATER ST. HELENS LEAGUE
Coach: Stephen Donohue
Key players: Michael McCann, sr., c; Clark Bryant, sr., of; Oscar Golberg, sr., of; Seth Rayburn, jr., p; Andrew Haley, jr., 1b; Alex Peterson, jr., p.
Outlook: River returns the core of the roster that advanced to the 3A regionals last year, and several talented players. Bryant was a second-team all-state pick, while McCann and Golberg are two-time first-team all-league picks. Rayburn went 9-0 last season. McCann signed a scholarship with Seattle University. All this makes several picks pick the Chieftains as the favorites in the 3A GSHL.
Coach: Owen Frasier
Key players: Jacob Brugman so.; Kyle Komlosi, sr.; Derek Pangelinan, so.
Outlook: The Trappers return just one varsity player from last season (Komlosi). But Frasier says the Trappers have a good group of young players to build around, particularly Brugman.
Coach: Ben McGrew
Key players: Andrew Strappazon, sr.; Alec Dannat, sr.
Outlook: Strappazon, a 2nd-team all-league pick, and Dannat, a three-year letterman, lead a solid group of seniors. The Eagles also have a strong class of sophomores. Their development will be key component in the Eagles’ playoff push.
Coach: Scot Meeker
Key players: Quentin Hakkinen, sr.,; Cobi Johnson, sr.; Tyson Johnson, sr., of; Ethan Mackey, sr., c; Alex McCormick, sr., 1b; Taylor Radcliffe, sr., ss; Sasha Jabusch, jr., of-p.
Outlook: The Hilanders look to compete in the always tough 3A GSHL. But health will be the key. Hakkinen and Johnson are coming off surgeries. Hakkinen, Tyson Johnson and Radcliffe were second-team all-league picks last season.
MOUNTAIN VIEW: No report received
Coach: Mark Ripley
Key players: Nick Gawley, sr., of-p; Garret Lindstrom, sr., 1b; Cam Callaway, sr., if-of; Justin Hughes, jr., c; Michael Guenther, so., ss; Tyler Armstrong, jr., p-3b; AJ Taylor, sr., p-if; Matt Vick, sr., c-dh; Brendan Bussey, jr., of.
Outlook: Pitching will be the key to help the Falcons remain a factor in the postseason race.
2A GREATER ST. HELENS LEAGUE
Coach: Nate Freese
Key players: Dylan Butler, sr., p-1b; Jared Gomez, sr., ss; Joel Worden, jr., p; Jesse Tonkinson, sr.; Taylor Ellensohn, jr., if-c-p; Justin Anderson, jr., p-of; Taylor Rennaker, jr., 2b; Dylan Osborne, so., of-1b; Greg Lord, jr., if-c; Brandon Anderson, fr.
Outlook: The Hawks are looking for new team leaders after graduating a large portion of its roster last season. But they bring a talented group of athletes who have shined in other sports like golf (Gomez), swimming (Butler, Osborne), football (Tonkinson) and basketball (Ellensohn, Rennaker).
Coach: Brice Richards
Key players: Ryan Littlefield, sr.; Tanner Brill, sr.; Brock Myklebust, sr.; Hiro Kusakabe, sr.; Doug Jason, sr; Artis Golden, sr.; Taylor Mosier, sr; Garrett Cash, sr.
Outlook: The Monarchs have a roster loaded with 12 seniors and look to use that experience to drive them toward their fourth league title in four years.
R.A. LONG: No report received
RIDGEFIELD: No report received
Coach: Greg Lewis
Key players: Braden Devlin, jr.; Zach Pietila, sr.; Dylan Waible, sr.; Matt Randle, sr.
Outlook: No additional details provided.
1A TRICO LEAGUE
Coach: Rob Williamson
Key players: Jesse Hancuff, sr., c; Isaiah Block, jr., p; Josh Soske, sr., of; Connor Fulton, jr., if.
Outlook: Hancuff and Block were first-team all-league selections last season. Soske and Fulton were second-team picks. Williamson looks for the Wildcats to compete for the league title with the likes of Kalama, Toledo and Woodland in a very competitive Trico League.
Coach: Eric Johnson
Key players: Zach Irwin, sr., ss-p; Brandon VanPelt, jr., 2b-p; Rutger Bialkowski, sr., 1b-p; Chris Penner, sr., p; Alec Brennan, jr., ut; Josh Anderson, so., 3b.
Outlook: The Bulldogs have seven returning lettermen on the roster, but also introduce seven freshmen to the program. The Bulldogs will hope its experienced players will help the younger ones develop quickly, so Stevenson will remain competitive in the Trico.
Coach: Stephen Short
Key players: Bryce McQuivey, sr.; Cy Whitmire, sr.; Colton Lucas, jr.; Hunter Huddleston, jr.; Austin Holcomb, so.; Trevor Huddleston, so.; Tanner Huddleston, so.; Aaron Shoup, so., Kelly Wenger, jr.; Joe Rodgers, jr.
Outlook: McQuivey and Whitmire are returning first-team all-league players. But that was the 2A GSHL. This year, the Beavers move down to the 1A Trico. An experienced roster will make the Beavers a factor in the Trico race.
No other reports received